Curious Inventor Blog

  • Thanks for all the links to our videos, we just passed 1M views on our youtube channel, along with 1002 subscribers. Let us know if you'd like any videos on specific topics.

  • For everyday tasks like tinning wires, it is difficult to hold the iron, solder, and wire in only two hands. To remedy this problem, you can jam the soldering iron in the coil of the iron holder.

    By using the holder to hold the iron sideways, you can use the iron in a stationary manor and move the solder and object being soldered instead of moving the iron and solder. Credit must be given to my father who showed me how to do this since a very young age.

  • Jimmy silk screened his own steel panel for the VOS. Check out his sound/sculpture/performance harrier exhibit--the vos would have fit in well.voice of saturn steel

  • Why is it easy to find 4.7k resistors, but not 4.8k resistors? Where do common values like 1.2k, 2.7k, 560, and 820 come from and who decides them? As you may know, resistors come in different tolerances, as indicated by the 4th band (gold = 5%, silver = 10%). A 100 ohm resistor with a 10% tolerance is expected to have a value somewhere between 90 and 110 ohms, so it wouldn't make much sense to buy a 101 Ohm resistor when it's actual value could be less than a 95 Ohm, 10% resistor. The Electronic Industries Association (EIA) is the primary body that standardizes the values for resistors, and they publish value lists called "E" series. In the 10% series, known as E12, each value is spaced so that there won't be overlap. The min and max values are listed:

    (min) value (max)
    (90) 100 (110)
    (108) 120 (132)
    (135) 150 (165)
    (162) 180 (198)
    (198) 220 (242)
    (243) 270 (297)

    The number following the "E" stands for the number of logarithmic steps per decade. Logwell has a table that lists common values from 10% through 1% Here is a neat resistor selection tool from uCHobby that allows you to select only legal values

  • Voice of Saturn + PBR art entry from Travis Thatcher on Vimeo. Modified Voice of Saturn Synth I made for the PBR Art show tonight in East Atlanta. There's a speaker in the can and it makes lovely noise.

  • If breadboard jumper kits seem too expensive, you can easily make your own with 22 AWG solid core wire. Just strip off a half inch of insulation from the ends and you'll be able to make hundreds of jumpers for the price of a small spool.Cheap DIY Breadboard Jumpers

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    H Polymoog Resonator + voltage control and Voice of Saturn from Travis Thatcher on Vimeo. J.H. Polymoog Resonatorclone with added voltage control and the Voice of Saturn synth/sequencer. More

  • Have to admit the song makes some good points... :)

  • Voice of Saturn Voltage Controlled Filter (Frac Format) from Travis Thatcher on Vimeo. We'll be releasing modules and kits very soon with a Eurorack version to follow in January. Check out flickr for more pics!

  • A SMT soldering class was taught at Atlanta's new hackerspace: freeside. It focused on usingstencils (from ohararp) and solder paste on a skillet and in a toaster oven. The video shows the amazing ability of the solder's surface tension to pull chips into alignment once the solder liquifies.

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